Sunday, 1 January 2012

Sherlock Series 2 -A Scandal in Belgravia

Rating: 5/5

Its back! I have a deep intake of breath as the title music kicks in, as one of the most eagerly anticipated second series of any show returns to the BBC in absolute superb style; as good as it was way back in the summer of 2010, Sherlock is back on our screens. Written by Steven Moffat, the first episode hits the ground running with a brilliantly new story that picks up straight after the nail biting cliff hanger confrontation between Jim Moriarty (Andrew Scott). The joy I have in saying that the series is back cannot be put into words, however I will do all I can to control my excitement. So here we go.

We return to the series with Holmes continuing to annoy others with his masterful deductions, whilst seeking out cases that do not bore him and satisfy him through periods of stagnation. Watson has a successful blog much to Holmes’ irritation, and continues his attempt at leading a normal life whilst in the present of his sociopathic flatmate Holmes. It feels so right that the show is back on our screens, and seeing both Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman speaking Moffat’s script as Holmes and Watson respectively fills me with glee and child like energy. Upon seeing the familiar and loveable characters, including the delightful Mrs. Hudson (Una Stubbs), Mycroft (Mark Gatiss) and the dainty Molly (Louise Brealey), make the show’s absence from our screens feel like an absolute age, which for many fans has been such prolonged period. The electrifying scripts and the excellent musical scores breathe life into Conan Doyle’s creation, in a unique way that provides the stories with energy unlike any other adaptation we have seen, even the excellent Guy Ritchie adaptations. The entire show oozes class, character and adventure unlike many shows on television, that is why its return is made all the better.

The addition to the cast for this episode was that of the elusive Irene Adler, played flirtatiously by Lara Pulver. Fans of the A Scandal in Bohemia, the story where Adler made her appearance in the Holmes canon, will love the manner in which she and Holmes interact with each other and play off each other, true to much of the chemistry created by the original story and the various adaptations that have followed. Played as a dominatrix who insures herself against ‘difficulties’ by creating explicit and compromising photos to use as potential blackmail, the character felt right in a twenty-first century environment, and reflected how a contemporary female criminal like the original Irene Adler would operate. To lower the detailed analysis of the character to a basic and simplistic description, she is very, very sexy. Moffat certainly knows his male audience.

Being a Holmes geek, I thought the opening episode was sensational and really captured a new side to the character of Holmes that we have not seen before, the fact he has a heart. I will not go into the details in case anyone is yet to watch it on BBC iplayer, but there are moments within the episode that change how we have viewed both Holmes and Watson in the past. Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman remain potentially the best Holmes and Watson partnership to date, commanding the screen through meticulous direction and powerfully written scripts. The references to the past stories of Doyle are enchanting, and will hopefully encourage Sherlock Holmes virgins to seek out the originals and experience them for all the splendour that they are.  I cannot begin to describe how much I adored the episode, and the pleasure I have in saying that Sherlock is back on our screens in fantastic, sexy and engrossing style. 

1 comment:

  1. Nice review of the episode.

    For a different look at this episode, check out my review .